A Fab Five List to Help You Engage, Evolve, Excel and Enjoy the Weekend

August 18, 2023 / by ECLARO

It’s five o’clock somewhere. Like right here at Eclaro, where we look at the weekend as an ideal time for some conversation and a little reflection, for trying something new and taking stock of the tried-and-true. All of this is inspired by our “Engage, Evolve, Excel” philosophy, which is fundamental to the ways in which we engage with clients and Eclaro team members alike.

The philosophy has also inspired Fridays at Five, our version of an Eclaro happy hour serving up a cocktail of ideas, thoughts and random musings from various members of the Eclaro team. Of course, it also works as something to savor with that Saturday morning coffee or to talk about over Sunday brunch. It’s a collection of things we have long loved or have just recently discovered, sources of inspiration both personal and professional, and let’s-talk-about-this topics that we simply find fun and interesting and hope you’ll enjoy as well.

Stepping into the Five on Friday fray this week is Eric Feil, Eclaro’s Senior Vice President of Marketing, who dives into the Engage Evolve Excel Explore Etcetera pool with a universal tip found on a podcast for new college students, some pain-free mountain-climbing, and a meander into Margaritaville…

Engage: I was listening to a podcast recently (you can check it out here) and one of the hosts shared “Always say ‘Hi’ first” as her best piece of advice to incoming college freshman. I immediately thought, Wow, that is great advice—not just for frosh at an orientation week mixer, but for anyone who wants to engage with new people, any time in life. Take that first step. Put yourself out there. Start a conversation—you never know where it will lead.

Evolve: I remember a month or so during my junior year of high school when my biology teacher was very big on telling our class that “the only constant is change.” He’d say it during a lesson on evolution, he’d repeat it if somebody’s grade went from an A to a C over the course of a few quizzes (yes, he was a funny guy).

That same month, for whatever reason—could have been coincidence, could have been a mutual staff lunch period—my English teacher would invariably write this on the board at the start of every class: ”Nought may endure but Mutability.” Which was how a romantic poet would say essentially the same thing as my bio teacher about change, just more, well, poetically.

What has always stuck with me is not just the inevitability of change, but the need for it. As individuals, in business, wherever you are in life, change is a powerful concept to harness. The secret, though, is not only knowing that you have to evolve but that you have to plan for it, and finding the right people to join you and help you in that evolution is one of the true keys to successful change.

Excel: I am not a mountain climber, literally speaking. But I do love the metaphor that mountain climbing offers (especially since metaphors don’t come with the requisite aches and pains, and I’ve never had to put a gallon of water and extra socks in a backpack in order to ascend a metaphor). I’ve gotten in the habit of watching at least one documentary every weekend about somebody who pushed themselves to the limit to scale a rocky cliff, to reach a snow-capped summit, to excel where few have excelled before them. The Dawn Wall and The Alpinist are a great pair to begin with, if you’re so inclined (yes, small pun intended), and 14 Peaks is astonishing in not only the story but in the way its lessons apply to formulating a seemingly impossible idea, growing that idea into a viable enterprise, making a sale when nobody seems interested in buying, and seeing challenges as opportunities to, yes, excel.

Explore: Every day I find myself speaking with someone—a colleague, a client, a friend, a family member, the person in line in front of me at the supermarket—about where great ideas come from. (That supermarket discussion began over potential brilliance of a churro-flavored Kit Kat.) As for your own great ideas, check out the 30 Circles Exercise in Creative Confidence by David Kelly and Tom Kelley—it’s a fun way to spark the creative juices for you and your team regardless of your business or industry, and the exercise itself holds a special spot on my personal “wow that’s a great idea” list.

Etcetera: Since this installment of Five on Friday began with a Jimmy Buffett reference, let’s wrap it up with a quick five-song playlist (it is, after all, FIVE on Friday) of some relatively obscure—and one very un-obscure—tracks from the Man from Margaritaville himself. There’s a little something for anyone pondering their job, a career change, certain business decisions or simply how to unwind when the workday comes to an end…

“It’s My Job”
“We Are the People Our Parents Warned Us About”
“Gypsies in the Palace”
“If It All Falls Down”
“It’s Five O’clock Somewhere”

Push play while you’re pondering the meaning of “the Right People are the Answer.”

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